Tagbanua people living in Barangay Barake, Aborlan will receive their Certificate of Ancestral Domain (CADT) from the national government this week, according to a statement released by the Philippine Information Agency (PIA).
The CADT, which formalizes the ownership of the indigenous community over ancestral lands, is reported to be around 2,795 and will house some 113 indigenous families living in Barangay Barake.
One of the Tagbanua leaders, Cerlita Emag, said that this will greatly benefit their community. They will reportedly use the allocated ancestral lands as their permanent home and where they will till the land for agriculture.
“Now we have a permanent home and farmlands, unlike before when we still move[d] from one place to another for our livelihood,” Emag was quoted to have said in Filipino.
Likewise, Indigenous Peoples’ Mandatory Representative (IPMR) Eherlinos Porka of Barangay Barake also gave his thanks for the granting of the CADT. According to the PIA, this is the seventh CADT registered in Palawan.
Under Republic Act No. 8371, or the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act (IPRA) of 1997, a CADT is a special land title granted to identified indigenous groups. Unlike most private land titles, land covered by CADT cannot be sold, disposed of, or destroyed, and is owned by all generations of indigenous peoples living in the property.